Islamabad: The Pakistan government today challenged LeT operations commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi's bail in the Islamabad High Court, saying an anti-terrorism court ignored testimony in the 26/11 case while granting bail to the 2008 Mumbai terror attack mastermind.
“We have challenged the Anti-Terrorism Court Islamabad's decision to grant bail to Lakhvi in the Islamabad High Court,” Prosecution chief Chaudhry Azhar told PTI.
Asked how the government managed to challenge Lakhvi's bail since the superior courts have been on winter holidays till January 8 and could not take up such petitions, Azhar said, “the government had requested the IHC to take up the petition considering it an urgent matter.”
The court office will fix the date of hearing. In the petition, the government has taken up a plea that the “ATC had ignored testimony in the case while granting bail to Lakhvi. Besides, there is a solid testimony available against Lakhvi despite of which the ATC had sanctioned his bail.”
It further said: “The ATC's order is not justified as the prosecution required a little more time to produce important witnesses against the accused.”
It also alleged that Lakhvi's counsels had caused a delay in the case's proceedings and requested the court to reject the ATC order to grant Lakhvi bail.
On December 18, 2014, the anti-terrorism court granted bail to Lakhvi, who was involved in planning, financing and executing the Mumbai terror attacks in November 2008. He was again detained on next day under the Maintenance of Public Order (MPO).
However, Islamabad High Court judge Noorul Haq Qureshi suspended Lakhvi's detention under MPO. Just before he was to be released, Lakhvi was arrested on charges of kidnapping Afghan national Muhammad Anwar Khan.
The police kept him at the Shalimar Police station here for a two-day physical remand before a magistrate sent him back to Adiala Jail yesterday for a 14-day judicial custody.
Lakhvi has been detained at Adiala Prison for the last five years or so. He will be produced before the magistrate on January 15.
The government has already challenged the IHC's order to suspend Lakhvi detention in the Supreme Court. On the other hand, Lakhvi has also challenged his detention in the abduction case in the IHC.
He and six others - Abdul Wajid, Mazhar Iqbal, Hamad Amin Sadiq, Shahid Jameel Riaz, Jamil Ahmed and Younis Anjum - have been charged with planning and executing the Mumbai attacks in November, 2008 that left 166 people dead. Lakhvi was arrested in December 2008 and was indicted along with the six others on November 25, 2009 in connection with the case. The trial has been underway since 2009.